Monday of the Sixth Week of Easter
Memorial Feast: Saint Damien de Veuster, Priest (1840-+1889)—Patron Saint of Leprosy
Acts 16:11-15, Psalm 149:1b-2, 3-4, 5-6a, 9b, & John 15:26–16:4
During the old black-and-white TV days, Perry Mason (1957-1966) was one of the most popular weekly series. Throughout the series, the great lawyer, Mr. Mason, lost only three cases. Viewers were given vast exposure to the role of the witness in a courtroom trial.
As we know, the best witnesses do not focus on what might have happened or speculate about a probable cause but rather speak to us about what they have seen or heard.
The Paraclete, the Spirit of Truth, says Jesus, will bear witness on My Behalf. The Holy Spirit will keep speaking the truths which Jesus first spoke. The Spirit has seen and heard these truths and speaks from experience.
Friends, we must bear witness as well. The followers of Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, are expected to keep the truth alive by speaking it to the world. Like a good trail witness, this truth cannot simply be something we have heard from a distance or imagine to be true. It must be what we have seen and heard. The Truth is what Jesus spoke, in which the Spirit gives witness, it must also be in our experience. It must be something which, in our hearts, we know to be true.
How much conviction do we need? We can recall that the Greek word for 'witness' gives us the English word 'martyr', which says it all. The truth is so much within them that martyrs were willing to stake their lives on it. And they did!
Questions of the Day: What truths of faith do you know? Where do you need to pray for the Spirit’s light and courage? What sort of witness will you be today?
Prayer to Saint Damien, the Martyr of Charity: You ministered to those in despair and isolation. I call upon you to open my heart and mind, to care for the poor, the sick, the weary, and the forgotten. Amen.